Solvang Festivals

Solvang Festivals

1. Taste of Solvang - mid March

Over three days in mid March, it’s all about the food and drink in Solvang. On Friday night, there’s a dessert reception and then Saturday is the Walking Smorgasbord from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. followed by the Walking Wine Tasting Room Tour. Sunday brings the BYO Picnic and Barbeque in Solvang Park. Going into its 20th year, Taste of Solvang is organized by the Solvang Conference and Visitors Center.

2. Old Santa Ynez Day - June

Every June 13th for nearly fifty years, Sagunto Street in downtown Santa Ynez has become the place where the town throws a party, a birthday party, that is. The celebration starts early, at 9 a.m. with arts and crafts, food booths, games, and antiques for sale. It’s not just for fun alone. All sales benefit local charities. The sponsoring Elks Club raises about $10,000 each year.

The day long festivities bring in as many as 10,000 people to the town’s celebration of its birth and western heritage. A parade of antique cars, tractors, horses, a grand marshal, and a rolling jail full of kiddie outlaws begins mid morning. One of the past parade marshals was John Crockett, descendant of the famed frontiersman, Davy Crockett, and former groom for the Queen of England’s driver.

If you go, buy a leather badge for $1. They have become collector’s items and it’s said that wearing one could save you from being thrown into the Santa Ynez jail and having to buy your way out!

3. Danish Days - September

The Danish Days celebration is Solvang’s oldest festival which began in 1936. The colorful three day event is the big party of the year for the city of Solvang. It was originally started to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Solvang’s founding and intended as a local event to remind settlers of their homeland. The year 2011 marks Solvang’s 100th anniversary and the 75th year of Danish Days.

Now it’s the city’s premier event drawing thousands of people every year to the festivities which include the Friday evening torchlight parade, concert in the park, opening ceremony, and Velkommen Street Dance on the first night. Saturday begins with a Danish Days breakfast followed by costumed folk dancers and demonstrations by expert chainsaw carvers. A Viking encampment in Solvang Park gives visitors realistic exhibitions with Nordic weaponry, the sword and axe. The day ends with a dinner dance. Sunday, continues the prior day’s activities and ends with a children’s parade and closing ceremonies in the afternoon.